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About forestofsouls

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  1. Help needed with Meditation

    I would check for the two common problems that can lead to this: 1. Check your posture. 2. Check your concentration. Concentration practices generally lead to tension especially in the head, neck, and shoulders and this tension is often ignored. Make sure to relax and let these tensions go, especially when concentrating for a long time.
  2. for such trutthhs

    The Four Noble truths are not just an organizing principle. They are the path itself. Realizing these truths deeply leads to liberation.
  3. A remote master would not do anyone any good. I think the trouble with teachers is similar to the problem with the mind. We look in all the wrong places.
  4. Great post. A good counterpoint to the neo-Advaita group.
  5. I don't know, Hagar. I am becoming firmly convinced that there is a teacher greater than all of them, who is willing and able to teach anyone at any time. A teacher who has no hype to live up to, nothing to gain, no agenda, no scandals, who charges nothing and gives everything. I don't think this teacher would have us stumble in the dark, unless we need or want to.
  6. Where is the mind?

    I find this hard to believe. Who knows you are the object? I think you may have missed the observer altogether.
  7. Who am I meditation

    I don't think "Who am I" is conducive to producing special states. I don't think that's the point. Who am I?, in my experience so far, moves beyond the objects. That means beyond thoughts, sensations, states. All these come and go, and nowhere do the great Masters say, "Ask Who am I? and then wait for a particular experience." If it brought about a particular experience, it would have a beginning and an end, and it would not be who you really are every moment.
  8. Where is the mind?

    If anyone is really interested, from a Buddhist perspective, there is actually an entire (Mahayana) Sutra on this. You can find a good translation here. Why do you believe it is in the center of your head? Do you perceive it there? If so, it's not your mind. awake, I'm still waiting for some one to explain to me how insentient matter can give rise to sentient perception, either in the form(lessness) of consciousness or in the distinct mental perceptions we have. Really, an EEG is nothing more than a series of mental sensations. The brain is also, in my opinon, nothing but a series of mental sensations. Pointing at the brain as the source of the mind is like pointing at a wave as the source of the ocean.
  9. energy

    How do you affect other people? I would be curious to learn more about that.
  10. The Moment of Choice

    I don't necessarily agree with what you wrote on assumptions. Assumptions may have an experiential basis. If assumptions were alogical, they wouldn't make any sense. For instance, I might assume that "soup in the 2 = 0". No, I don't assume that. On the other hand, I assume based on your writing that you are a male. It is logically based on tone, style, and content. Yet it is an assumption. What I know about perception is based on experience. I can't say it is active nor passive. How do I know it's different from all other things, including active mentation? Well, I have perceived it. Perceivin transcends and includes other states, which is how we can even talk about them to begin with. I don't know what you mean by true contemplation. I do know there is a difference between thinking about Paris and travelling to Paris. Likewise, there is a difference between thinking about the mind and observing the mind. Experience and concepts obviously bear some relationship. Again, we could make up nonsensical concepts. If I go out and look at mountains, I may come up with a concept of a mountain, a mental abstraction based on experiential sensation. I am unlikely to come up with a concept "lever tree two thousand". However, I could come up with concepts about Paris based on reading about Paris, and come up with concepts based on visiting Paris. These different experiences will give rise to completely different concepts, don't you think?
  11. The Moment of Choice

    gih, I don't have a great agenda. What I find perplexing, and interesting about your posts is the unique combination of things that seem completely wrong and things that are right on. My purpose for this exchange was to 1) sharpen my communication; 2) see if there anything to learn; 3) see what produces gih types of posts. I am a simple person. In the past, I used to philosophize a lot, contemplate a lot, spun up thoughts up a lot. But over time, I found this not to be helpful. One helpful thing I learned is that there was no thought, no way of thinking, no book, no golden key, no technique that would solve the riddle. I have found a lot more to do with perceiving than thinking. There is an organic knowledge that is born only through perception, and a more mechanical (in my view) born of thinking, associating, and rearranging the mental contents. I have found, in my life, that organic knowledge brings change, while mechanical often perpetuates what has come before. My sense of your posts is that they tend to emphasize philosophical concepts over experiential data. I suppose what I'm trying to get at are the experiences, if any, behind the concepts.
  12. Newbie confused by "see and not see"

    Sri Sadhu Om suggests: doing and being. I agree with Cat, though. When I first started reading spiritual things, I saw a lot of contradictions. Over time, I've noticed things become progressively clearer. A simple phrase may have deep layers of meaning that can only unfold over time. One of my favorites is: everything is impermanent.
  13. The Moment of Choice

    I see the way. But as the saying goes, just because the sun is out doesn't mean all the snow is melted. I would say there's no constriction, no holding back. When you see the small mind as the mind, this is clear. How can you be constricted? Ignorant, yes. Forgetful, yes. This seems to be more where the problem lies. Actually, I was not fully clear when I said there was nothing else. There is perceiving. Not a feeling of perceiving, this is a perception. You're just restating what I said. Thus, there is agreement. You're missing the point. The point was, there is nothing beyond perception (and perceiving). Adding more perceptions (i.e. thoughts) doesn't establish anything about perception. The point is, you cannot go beyond perception to talk of crazy things like "essence" or "identity" or "bases." You assume a lot, gih. I've noticed a tendency to take a tiny bit of information, and extrapolate. I see you're misinterpreted what I said, and come to a conclusion based on it. I don't blame the misinterpretation, this is the nature of communication. You're right, my process is not refined. It is easy. It is simple. It is using awareness to investigate. Not concepts, theories, or mental tricks. Just observing, watching, noticing. It's not about smart or dumb, fancy or plain. You can talk about patterns of perceptions, and these are not necesarily perceptions. You see a light. Then it is gone. That is impermanance. But you aren't REALLY seeing impermanance. You are seeing a light, light, light, gone. Well, it goes more like this. Eyes open, tree. There was no volition, no process of selection, coloring, or shaping the tree. It is just there. All that other stuff "beautiful sight" "rain" "thunder" this is just adding thought. Soemtimes there are thoughts, sometimes not. But again, not controlled. As you noted earlier, they arise spontaneously. Now, you appear to say that it arises partly of effort. While I admit that what you say here is interesting (and makes me wonder what your experiences actually ARE), I do say I smell ego. Shape, control, change according to will, this is small mind stuff. Does big mind care? But on the other hand, if this was possible, I suppose it would loosen up small mind's grip, if not destroy it. Let me say this point is deferred. But there is no lucid dreaming without realizing one is in a dream. To paraphrase Gurdjieff, how can you change anything unless first you are present? There is some responsibity, I would hope. If you start a process, you should be around to finish the job. This is another big leap, again based on little information. Read again what I wrote, perhaps with some calm passivity. I wouldn't jump in front of the car, and I'm pretty sure you wouldn't either. As any good soldier knows, a battle plan usually lasts about five seconds into an actual battle. Your reaction to my words says more about you than about me. And vice versa. Again, I won't play into your options. It's not either/or, choice A or B. I would keep less in mind than what Lin Chi may or may not have done, and more what we can do hereand now. You seem to profess different things at different times, so who knows? You brought up the Buddhas.
  14. The Moment of Choice

    Constricting. But only because I can see the limitations. No, this is just mixing up definitions. Experience can refer to a single perceptual moment, multiple, or to an abstract concept. When I was using the word experience, I was using its more abstract meaning, and when I used the word perception, I was using it to refer to specific audio/visual/feeling events. I agree. Well, here is where the confusion sets in. You cannot establish what gives rise to any perception. You have the perception, that is all. Anything that is outside the perception is unknown. You can add mental pictures/concepts/associations to your perception, but that doesn't establish anything. Now, if there was nothing that makes the moon reliably (I leave aside inherent, because how do you perceive inherentness? and permanence because everything changes, eventually the moon will fade away like everything else), how could anyone distinguish between the moon and the sun? Even a tiny child knows the difference. Whether or not there is something "behind" perceptions is unknowable. So to say there is a basis, or not a basis behind a perception is unverifiable, because you can go no further than your perceptions. Now the car is not empty--- if you think so, step in front of it! But it is impermanent, that is to say, subject to change. But that doesn't mean it doesn't exist in a transitory state, in your perceptions. What do you know of Buddhas? Have you seen them do this? Or is this "conjecture"? Speculating on the minds of the Buddhas cannot be helpful. Do you perceive the inner mind of the Buddha? Yes, but not outside yourself. How else can it be? The rest is concepts. They do not connect to perceptions, and, in my simple mind, appear as mental gymnastics. Bravo! I've said this so myself. There are different levels. But the neo-Advaitans don't talk about this. They just stay in the absolute realm, which is not helpful to people stuck in the relative realm.